As a nation we have certainly become more aware of our diets and the food we eat, or at least we like to think we have. As you sit there slurping your cup of tea down on a Saturday evening you will notice several commercials promoting ‘healthy’ and ‘low fat’ and ‘low calorie’ foods. Fast forward to your next shopping trip to the supermarkets and you will notice a lot of ‘want to get healthy’ individuals loading their baskets with these foods. So are they right to do so? Not really! Here are the 4 most common ‘healthy food’ tricks which you MUST be very wary of!
Next time you reach for the ‘low fat’ option just check the ‘carbohydrates of which sugars’ content! The chances are this is higher than the ‘normal’ version of the food you have just picked up. This isn’t always the case, but a lot of the time when a company makes a ‘low fat’ option they up the sugar carbohydrates to replace the lost flavour. So you can market the product as having almost no fat, therefore you can’t possibly get fat from eating it. Well, what happens when those sugar carbohydrates get into your body? After your muscle glycogen levels are full and there is still plenty left the easiest thing for the body to do is break it down into body fat! So in my opinion, sugar carbohydrates are just as bad in high amounts. In fact, worse in many ways because fats in certain foods like yoghurts are good natural fats which can in fact promote fat loss! Therefore by taking certain fats out of some foods and replacing them with sugar carbohydrates, you are making the food less healthy!
This one is always a good chuckle. With the whole nation fixated with ‘calorie’ counting it is no wonder a 80 calorie chocolate bar becomes a popular snack amongst ‘health conscious’ people. Think about it, is it really the number of calories which matter or WHAT the calories actually are? The 80 calories from a chocolate bar are 100% NOT good for your fat loss goals, as where the 160 calories you may get from a healthy balanced snack are 95% GOOD for your fat loss goals. It isn’t just how many calories you eat, it is about your ability to metabolise the calories and make use of them.
Not so long ago I was in a fish and chip shop and they had a ‘calorie’ comparison chart between popular takeaway meals in the UK. Something like MacDonald’s, Subway, Burger King, Pizza and Fish and Chips. Well the fish and chips were the ‘healthy’ option because they had the least calories. As it happens a king size serving of fish and chips is my favourite binge out by a mile, but I am under NO illusions it is healthy! I cry of the thought of people wanting to shed body fat opting for fish and chips due to its ‘healthier’ contents. The truth is, food like this is a treat, end of!
On a cold winters day I love to tuck into a large bowl of home made soup with crusty buttered bread with dollops of melting cheese in the soup. However, I see diets which use a lot of ‘low calorie’ soups are popular which I am sceptical about. One of the key benefits of eating regular solid meals is the thermogenic effect of digesting food, causing more calories to be used. A lot of low calorie soups do also lack nutritious content therefore I don’t believe in soup based diets which are promoted as ‘healthy’ by a lot of organisations. Sure, have soup but in the same way you would have any other meal, in moderation! Making it the staple of your diet will hold your fat loss goals back!
Fruit features daily in my diet, for breakfast I will have some blueberries, strawberries and banana with my oats. However, the constant rant that fruit is pure 'healthy' doesn't tell the whole story. The contents of fruit is very good in terms of antioxidants and vitamins. However, vegetables are better! What people don't remember is that a lot of fruits such as oranges are high in sugar. 'But they are natural sugars so they are good for me' is a common reaction to this! Yes, they may be natural but they still have the same effect on your insulin and blood sugar levels! Eating loads of fruit, especially through the day will promote fat gains!